World Cup 2014

That time has come, the World Cup 2014 is now under way and will continue for the next month.  As with any major sporting event, employers will need to think about the impact this may have on their business.  ACAS has published guidance on the World Cup in which they claim that ‘overall, flexibility from both employers and employees throughout the World Cup period is key to a productive business and engaged workforce.’
This leaves the question of how to achieve such flexibility.

Luckily for most employers, the England games are scheduled for a 5pm kick off so should not interfere too much with the working day.  However, employees may want to go home early, change a shift pattern or watch other matches,  Employees should be asked to request leave in the usual way.  An alternative would be to allow employees flexibility over their working day: starting late or leaving early and making up the time.  Any such arrangements should be agreed and recorded in advance.
Employers will also need to consider whether they will allow employees to watch or listen to any matches during the working day.  This is a good time to review your social media policy to ensure that what is and is not acceptable is clearly set out.  If employers wish to monitor internet usage to keep tabs on employees, this must be set out in a policy before the monitoring takes place.

Finally, employees may want to have a drink whilst watching a match.  Again, employers are advised to have a clear policy in place confirming that employees should not be at work whilst under the influence of alcohol.
Don’t forget that there are other sporting events this summer, (Wimbledon and the Commonwealth Games) so, it is a good idea to check your policies are in order.

Petra Venton